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GAMES OF LOVE & CHANCE 29 March 2014

GAMES OF LOVE & CHANCE Saturday 29 March 2014 Robert Blackwood Hall, Monash University Approximately 2 hours with one interval Games of Love and Chance is presented by Victorian Opera and Monash University Academy of Performing Arts. CONDUCTOR Richard Mills Orchestral Preparation Fabian Russell Repetiteurs Phoebe Briggs Phillipa Safey Simon Bruckard SOLOISTS (in order of appearance) Roxane Hislop Douglas McNicol Carlos E. Bárcenas Jeremy Kleeman Olivia Cranwell Lisa Gasteen

Wagner Prelude - Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg Saint-Saëns Amour! viens aider ma faiblesse – Samson et Delilah Roxane Hislop Mozart ‘Hm Hm Hm!’ Quintet – The Magic Flute Matthew Tng, Michael Petruccelli, Cristina Russo, Kate Amos, Emma Muir-Smith Verdi Credo in un Dio crudel – Otello Douglas McNicol Bizet La fleur que tu m'avais jetée – Carmen Carlos E. Bárcenas Bizet Trio – Carmen Roxane Hislop, Elizabeth Lewis, Kate Amos Richard Mills New Year's Eve Quartet – Summer of the Seventeenth Doll Cristina Russo, Elizabeth Lewis, Carlos E. Bárcenas, Nathan Lay Mascagni Intermezzo - Cavalleria Rusticana Donizetti Sextet - Lucia di Lammermoor Kate Amos, Emma Muir-Smith, Carlos E. Bárcenas, Michael Petruccelli, Nathan Lay, Jeremy Kleeman INTERVAL Wagner Prelude to Act Three – Lohengrin Marshall-Hall (ed. Divall) Tired Nature Sleeps – Stella Olivia Cranwell Blitzstein Consider the Rain – Regina Kate Amos, Emma Muir-Smith, Elizabeth Lewis, Jeremy Kleeman, Nathan Lay, Michael Petruccelli, Cristina Russo, Matthew Tng Verdi Urna fatale – La forza del destino Douglas McNicol Bizet Quintet – Carmen Kate Amos, Emma Muir-Smith, Elizabeth Lewis, Michael Petruccelli, Matthew Tng Wagner Im Treibhaus (In the Glasshouse) – Wesendonck Lieder Lisa Gasteen Wagner Prelude to Act Three, and Prelude – Tristan und Isolde Strauss Im Abendrot (At Sunset) – Vier letzte Lieder Lisa Gasteen


Roy Theaker*

Violin 1

Daniel Tan Justine Ayers Andrew Chong Martin Cheng Alexander White Francesca Teltscher Taylor Erica Russell Natasha Conrau* Kathryn Buttigieg Elene Papazoglou Niamh Saunders Miriam Bell Genevieve Trinh

Violin 2

Miranda Matheson Callum McInnes Vivian Cantera Benjamin Spiers* Clare Gorton Ellen Block Kristine Khong Rebecca Jennings Natalie Drenoski Lorcan Nicholson Myriam Vinot Eloise Toohey Hamish Roe


Merewyn Bramble* Madeline Nichols* Cheralyn Simpson Lawrence Tsui Megan Burslem* James Kefford Julia Gillies* Natasha Paige Rebecca Parfitt*


Jennifer Mills Svetlana Bogosavljevic* Michael Ryan Luke Severn Miranda Bell Chloe Federow-Yemm Camilla Saunders Nadya Rubini Ball Ellen Guilfoyle Sage Fuller Mia Dorrington

Double Bass

Jonathan Heilbron* Alexandra Giller Rebecca Scully* Krishna Ragunathan Ian Crossfield Patrick Lyons


Lydia Sharrad* Daniel Nguyen


Elizabeth Collier


Jasper Ly* Naomi Kwong

Oboe/Cor Anglais David Reichelt* Clarinet

Thomas Azoury Ashleigh Grabau

Clarinet/ Bass Clarinet

Reid Furlanetto


Christopher Martin* Thomas St John*

Bassoon/ Contrabassoon

Matthew Kneale*

French Horn Robert McMillan* Georgia Ioakimidis Macdougall* Roman Ponomariov* Lauren Davine Trumpet

George Hronakis Grace Went Lauren McAlister


Iain Faragher* Tyson Barker

Bass Trombone

James Littlewood


Lai Tak Chun*


Jennifer Morrish*


Lara Wilson Robert Allan*


Huhana De Marinis


Phillipa Safey Simon Bruckard


Simon Bruckard


Phoebe Briggs


Phillipa Safey

* denotes guest musician

Artistic Director’s Message

Occasionally, as in Tristan und Isolde, the real experience of the composer – in this case Wagner’s affair with Mathilde Wesendonck, finds sublimation through expression in some of the greatest love music ever written.

It is a real pleasure to present this concert in partnership with this great university. Monash University is a leader in innovation in so many disciplines – their commitment to innovation and intellectual curiosity is a core value of Victorian Opera. I would like to thank Monash University for inviting us to be a part of the life of this campus – I hope this association can continue and prosper in the years ahead. The music of this evening is inspired by love – manifested in diverse dynamics, surprising, often ignited by a chance encounter, sometimes joyous, often painful and tragic. Love which is often in conflict and duty and which, whatever its nature, never runs its course without conflicts, trials and difficulties. Moreover, these heroic love relationships are never without a context which involves others, either caught in a destructive vortex, as in Otello and Carmen, or sharing in the happiness of lovers united, as in The Magic Flute and Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg.

2014 / From Artistic Director Richard Mills

So these risky games of love and chance find many different chromatic and musical contexts in one program: from the loving contemplation of Carmen’s rose by Don José and the crazed, victimised Lucia of the wedding scene which breaks her reason, to the optimistic energy of Tamino beginning his quest to find Pamina, the poisonous jealousy of Iago, the seductive majesty of Delilah plotting Samson’s downfall and the sublime transcendence of Tristan and Isolde. Each of these moments, because of their power, affect the lives and destinies of those around them. Samson brings down an empire and the worlds of the village in Cavalleria Rusticana, the Melbourne terrace house of Summer of the Seventeenth Doll and the personal destinies of Kurwenal and Brangäne in Tristan und Isolde are transformed by the radiating passion of the central couples. The fire and energy of love changes everything it touches – and has inspired the music we shall hear this evening, enjoy. - Richard Mills, Artistic Director, Victorian Opera

A Message From Monash University

Games of Love and Chance represents an important milestone in the history of the Monash Academy Orchestra, and the Monash University Academy of Performing Arts. The Orchestra brings gifted student musicians from the broader student community together with professional mentors in the performance of works ranging across the length and breadth of symphonic repertoire, and is regarded as one of Australia's leading training orchestras. With this event, it has the opportunity to showcase its versatility, in a concert featuring some of Australia's leading operatic voices, crowned by Lisa Gasteen, who can lay claim to being our greatest Wagnerian soprano.

The vision of Monash as a cultural hub, providing an additional destination for Melbourne’s rapidly growing south eastern corridor, has been articulated on many occasions by our Vice-Chancellor, Professor Ed Byrne. Victorian Opera sees as central to its mission the spreading of the transformative power of opera as not only one of the greatest expressions of the human imagination, but as a great experience for people of all ages. Thus the meeting of the two organisations through an event such as this is of great significance, and will hopefully signify the first of many such collaborations. For our musicians, many of whom are students at the Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music here at our Clayton campus, the opportunity to work under the leadership of Richard Mills will be a watershed experience. Maestro Mills is one of our most distinguished composers and conductors, whose contribution to our musical culture has been a towering one. He has mentored countless young musicians throughout his career, and his generosity and profound ability to communicate the inner meaning of the music he conducts has earned him a place amongst our greatest musical statesmen. It is therefore with the greatest pleasure that I welcome you to the Robert Blackwood Hall, home of the Monash Academy Orchestra, for this special event. - Paul Grabowsky, Executive Director, Monash University Academy of Performing Arts

A Message From Monash University / 2014

PROGRAM NOTES Wagner | Prelude – Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg The glorious Prelude to Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg was composed in 1862, five years before the opera was completed and contains many of the themes from the opera. Saint-Saëns | Amour! viens aider ma faiblesse – Samson et Delilah Delilah knows that Samson is entranced by her. She sings of her seductive powers that will distract him from leading the revolution against the Philistines. Delilah is aware that she has the power to ensnare Samson and that his famous strength will be rendered useless by his lust for her. Mozart | ‘Hm Hm Hm!’ Quintet – The Magic Flute Papageno has been punished for lying. He can only grunt in exasperation at first as Tamino sings of his will to find his love, Pamina. The Queen of the Night’s three ladies free Papageno and sing of three young boys who will present them with silver bells and a magic flute to help them find their loves. Verdi | Credo in un Dio crudel – Otello Lago sings of his desire for revenge and his hatred of humankind. He believes in a cruel god.

PROGRAM NOTES / Games of Love & Chance

Bizet | La fleur que tu m'avais jetée – Carmen Don José tries to convince Carmen that he loves her by presenting her with the flower that she had thrown at his feet and that he has kept close to his heart since they first met outside the cigarette factory. Bizet | Trio – Carmen Frasquita and Mercedes deal the tarot cards and read their futures. Both girls dream of riches and good fortune. Carmen reads hers and sees only death. Richard Mills | New Year's Eve Quartet – Summer of the Seventeenth Doll It’s New Year’s Eve. Olive, Pearl, Roo and Barney reflect on the year that was and the changes in store for each of them. Mascagni | Intermezzo – Cavalleria Rusticana Mascagni’s glorious intermezzo from Cavalleria Rusticana, a moment of devotional calm before the storms of passion are unleashed. Donizetti | Sextet – Lucia di Lammermoor Lucia and Arturo have just been married: an alliance arranged by Lucia’s brother, Enrico, to save the family from destitution. Lucia is distraught as she is in love with Edgardo.

Wagner | Prelude to Act Three – Lohengrin Wagner’s mighty Prelude to his opera Lohengrin was first performed in 1850. At the time, the composer was in exile due to his involvement in the Dresden Uprising. Marshall-Hall (ed. Divall) | Tired Nature Sleeps – Stella Written in 1912, Tired Nature Sleeps is from Stella by George W Marshall-Hall, an Englishborn composer, conductor and poet. He was the inaugural professor of music at Melbourne University and a mightily controversial figure, his passionate and volatile nature contributed to his dismissal, but he was greatly loved by many. Blitzstein | Consider the Rain – Regina Blitzstein’s Regina was based on Hellman’s play, The Little Foxes and uses both operatic and Broadway styles. Alexandra, Birdie, Addie and Horace sing of a quiet life, while inside the church a gospel choir praises the Lord. Verdi | Urna fatale – La forza del destino

Wagner | Im Treibhaus (In the Glasshouse) – Wesendonck Lieder The poet reflects that the plants are strangers imprisoned in the hothouse and understands their quiet suffering and loneliness. The music of this song most closely resembles that of Act 3 of Tristan. Wagner | Prelude to Act Three, and Prelude Wagner’s opera Tristan und Isolde was composed between 1857 and 1859, and changed the language of music forever. Strauss | Im Abendrot (At Sunset) – Vier letzte Lieder This is the last of Richard Strauss’ Four Last Songs which was written shortly before the composer’s death. The poet, Joseph von Eichendorff, muses on the tranquillity of life’s end. Program notes compiled by: Richard Mills, Artistic Director and Phoebe Briggs, Head of Music, Victorian Opera.

A dramatic aria exploring the hero’s conflicted soul. Bizet | Quintet – Carmen Carmen tells her smuggler friends that she can’t come with them to deliver their contraband as she has fallen in love with Don José and wants to wait for him.

Games of Love & Chance / PROGRAM NOTES


Richard Mills

Carlos E. Bárcenas

Olivia Cranwell

Richard Mills is one of Australia’s most prolific and internationally recognised composers. He pursues a diverse career as a composer, conductor and artistic director. He has held numerous prestigious posts, and received many scholarships, fellowships and awards including an AM, in 1999. He was Artistic Director of the West Australian Opera 1997 – 2012, Director of the Australian Music Project for the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra 2002 – 2008 and Musica Viva’s Composer of the Year in 2008. Richard regularly conducts the leading orchestras and opera companies of Australia and has an extensive discography of orchestral works including his own compositions.

Carlos was born in Colombia and moved to Australia in 2008, where he completed his Bachelor and Masters in Music (Opera Performance) at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music, University of Melbourne. With Victorian Opera in 2013, Carlos performed the Judge in The Magic Pudding – the opera, the Miller in Puss in Boots, as a soloist in Opera on a White Night, and understudied Mao in Nixon in China. Work with other companies include Alexander in Il Re Pastore for Melbourne Lyric Opera, Don José in Carmen for Opera in Good Company, Michael for Deborah Cheetham’s new opera Pecan Summer, Sigmund & Siegfried for More Than Opera’s production of The Ring - Wagner Animated.

Olivia Cranwell is a graduate of the Master of Music (Opera Performance) program, run by Victorian Opera in partnership with the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music, University of Melbourne. Performances with Victorian Opera include Gossip (Angelique), Watkin Wombat/Rooster (The Magic Pudding - the opera), Celeste 1 and Waitress (Sunday in the Park with George), Puss (Puss in Boots), Queen Clementine (Sleeping Beauty), Clorinda (La Cenerentola), Robber Girl (Snow Queen), God (Noye’s Fludde) and the Gala Concerts 2012 and 2013 (Opera on a White Night). Other roles include Carmen (In Good Company); The Plaintiff/ Angelina in Trial by Jury, Hebe in HMS Pinafore (Savoy Opera Company); Papagena in The Magic Flute (VCA Orchestra).

BIOGRAPHIES / Creative & Cast

Lisa Gasteen

Roxane Hislop

Jeremy Kleeman

Lisa Gasteen has performed internationally to high acclaim, is a Cardiff Singer of the World winner and a multiple recipient of the Helpmann award. She has played title roles in Salome, Electra, Ariadne auf Naxos and Die Frau ohne Schatten, and performed the three Brünnhilden in Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen. Her concert repertoire includes Mendelssohn's Elijah, Beethoven's Ninth Symphony and Verdi's Requiem with orchestras internationally. Lisa is Practice Professor of Opera at Queensland Conservatorium of Music and is the founder of the Lisa Gasteen National Opera School.

Roxane Hislop is a graduate of Sydney University, the NSW Conservatorium of Music and holds a Masters Degree in Arts Administration from RMIT University, Melbourne. With an Operatic repertoire of over 50 roles, she has appeared with every major opera company and symphony orchestra in Australia. Her many roles for Victorian Opera include the Stepmother in the Cinderella pantomime, Baba the Turk (The Rake’s Progress), Marcellina (The Marriage of Figaro), multiple roles in Midnight Son by Gordon Kerry, Geertje Dircx (Rembrandt’s Wife), Dryad ( Ariadne auf Naxos), Amastre ( Xerxes), Jocasta (Oedipus Rex) in concert and June/Queen (The Love of the Nightingale).

Bass-Baritone Jeremy Kleeman completed a Bachelor of Music at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music in 2011, and in 2013 graduated from the Conservatorium’s collaborative degree, Master of Music (Opera Performance), with Victorian Opera. Last year Jeremy appeared as Albert the Pudding in The Magic Pudding – the opera and The Ogre in El Gato con Botas for Victorian Opera, and recently performed Colline in La bohème for Opera New England. Jeremy was a prize-winning finalist in the 2013 National Liederfest and the 2012 IFAC Australian Singing Competition, and is generously supported in 2014 by the Joseph Sambrook Opera Scholarship with the Melba Opera Trust.

Creative & Cast / BIOGRAPHIES


Professor Paul Grabowsky

General Manager Damien Boyle

Creative Producer

Fred Wallace

Marketing & Box Office Manager Regina Georgakilas

Douglas McNicol Dramatic baritone, Douglas McNicol, performs villainy, tragedy and comedy as Strauss’s Jochanaan, Verdi’s Lago, Don Carlo (Forza), Rigoletto, Ford, Amonasro, Germont, Puccini’s Scarpia, Jack Rance, Marcello, Sharpless, Mozart’s Don Giovanni, Leporello, Count Almaviva, Papageno, Don Alfonso. Four Villains (Hoffmann), Peter (Hansel & Gretel), Escamillo (Carmen), Pizarro (Fidelio), Jupiter (Orpheus), Pooh-Bah (Mikado), Falke (Fledermaus). He has a reputation for excellence in contemporary opera with world premiere performances in Love of the Nightingale (Tereus), Madeline Lee, Voss, and the Australian premieres of Sweeney Todd and as Owen Hart (Dead Man Walking). He has studied with Joshua Hecht (New York), Margreet Hönig (Amsterdam), James Christiansen and at the Elder Conservatorium of Music and Flinders University (Music/Drama). BIOGRAPHIES / Creative & Cast

Technical Services Manager Russell Proud

Production Coordinator & Orchestra Administrator Hannah Hookey

Event Coordinator

Sandy Coghill

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VICTORIAN OPERA STAFF Conductor Emeritus Richard Gill OAM Victorian Opera Board Jane Hemstritch (Chairman) Greig Gailey (Deputy Chairman) Francis Ebury, Earl of Wilton Ross Freeman Anne Gilby The Hon. Professor Barry Jones, AO Penny Stragalinos Catherine Walter AM Executive Artistic Director Dr Richard Mills AM Managing Director Andrew Snell Executive Producer Libby Hill Artistic and Education Head of Music Phoebe Briggs Repetiteur Phillipa Safey Education & Community Engagement Manager Melissa Stark Artistic Administration Coordinator Kate Stephens Finance and Administration Finance & HR Manager Darren O'Beirne Finance Assistant Claire Voumard Office Administrator Kate Bailey VICTORIAN OPERA / Staff

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Victorian Opera 2014 - Games of Love & Chance Programme  
Victorian Opera 2014 - Games of Love & Chance Programme